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SHOW REVIEW: Five Things Learned From Everyone Orchestra [Boulder, CO]


Matt Butler has one of the coolest jobs in the world.

In case you have never seen Everyone Orchestra, conductor Matt Butler leads a rotating cast of musicians through set-long jam sessions. Butler’s melodic guidance is truly incredible to watch, as he uses dance, air-instrumenting, and suggested themes to steer the music. His passion and excitement for the music was palpable and contagious throughout the night.


Songs do not need to be written before they are performed.

One of the coolest aspects about the show was that the jams were far more experimental than your typical jazz-standard improv jam. Furthermore, songs were created and explored on the spot. When Butler suggested the planet’s alignment as the musical theme, Jans Ingber (Motet) improvised vocals that manifested the formation of a complete song; it was really incredible. The vocal improvisation was outstanding all night and enabled more structure to the improvised songs.


Elephant Revival’s Bridget Law brings the HEAT!

Despite being relatively unfamiliar with Elephant Revival, seeing their fiddle player absolutely slay her strings all night certainly has sparked an interest. Her impeccable playing shattered space, time, and any means of genre definition. She was able to capture the heartfelt, soulful aspects of folk and bluegrass while not missing a step (or pluck) when the music began to move toward the electronic spectrum.


Kam Franklin is a name you should learn.

Singer for the opening group, The Suffers, this beautiful soul captured the hearts of everyone while warming up the stage for the evening. Her intoxicating voice and outstanding energy reminded me of a new-age Aretha Franklin.


I need more Reed Mathis in my life

This was my first experience seeing Mathis live, but I instantly fell in love with his sound. His soulful, sonic bass lines cultivated a supreme rhythmic foundation for the entire evening. Each note he played was a strong musical pillar that allowed the jams to grow.

Overall, the entire performance was thoroughly impressive. The experimental improvisation and genre-fusion was absolutely mind-blowing. Needless to say, EO again is something you should always see if given the opportunity.


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